Saturday, 17 October 2020

Books to Look Forward to from Orion Publishing

 January 2021

Kim and Jim: Philby and Angleton, Friends and Enemies in the Cold War by Michael Holman. Kim Philby's life and career has inspired an entire literary genre: the spy novel of betrayal. He was one of the leaders of the British counter-intelligence efforts, first against the Nazis, then against the Soviet Union. He was, arguably, the KGB's most valuable double agent, so highly regarded that today his image is on the postage stamps of the Russian Federation. Philby was the son of St. John Philby, an Arabist contemporary and sometime colleague of T. E. Lawrence. Kim Philby benefited from his father's connections when he worked as a journalist - in Spain, during the Civil War; in France, during the first months of the Second World War; and in the Middle East after the Suez Crisis of 1956 until his escape to Moscow in 1963. There, in retirement, he helped train the last generation of Soviet spies. Philby was the mentor of James Jesus Angleton, one of the main figures in the early years of the CIA who became the long-serving chief of the counter-intelligence staff of the Agency. Angleton developed the CIA's worldwide network of alliances with other secret intelligence agencies from Australia to Israel, supervised the opening of all overseas mail and telegrams, and served as the CIA's liaison to the Warren Commission. James Angleton and Kim Philby were friends for six years, or so Angleton thought. They were then enemies for the rest of their lives. Both agreed about that. This is the story of their intertwined careers, and the dramatic effect of these on the Cold War.

Violent Gentleman is by Danny O'Leary. He does what's right. Not what's easy. Jeremiah O'Connell made his name solving problems in London and now does the same in LA. The problems other people can't or won't touch? They're the ones that end up at Jerry's door. Suddenly Jeremiah has problems of his own when he sets out to right a wrong and finds himself on the hitlist of one of LA's most feared drug gangs. As the stakes rise, so does the body count, and Jerry has the fight of his life on his hands. Now, with high-class escort Noah in tow, Jeremiah must revisit his old London stomping grounds and assemble his team in order to wage all-out war on the streets on Tinseltown...

The Two Lost Mountains is by Matthew Reilly. An incredible victory but at a terrible price. Against all the odds, Jack West Jr found the Three Secret Cities but at a heartbreaking cost. His beloved daughter Lily, it appeared, was slaughtered by Jack's mortal enemy, Sphinx in a cruel ancient ritual. To the mountains and the fall. With his rivals far ahead of him, Jack must now get to one of the five iron mountains-two of which have never been found-and perform a mysterious feat known only as 'The Fall'. Although what is this object on the moon that is connected to it? A new player arrives. Amid all this, Jack will discover that a new player has entered the race, a general so feared by the four legendary kingdoms they had him locked away in their deepest dungeon. Only now this general has escaped and he has a horrifying plan of his own...

February 2021

Blood Grove is by Walter Mosley. Ezekiel "Easy" Porterhouse Rawlins is an unlicensed private investigator turned hard-boiled detective always willing to do what it takes to get things done in the racially charged, dark underbelly of Los Angeles.But when Easy is approached by a shell-shocked Vietnam War veteran- a young white man who claims to have gotten into a fight protecting a white woman from a black man- he knows he shouldn't take the case. Though he sees nothing but trouble in the brooding ex-soldier's eyes, Easy, a vet himself, feels a kinship form between them. Easy embarks on an investigation that takes him from mountaintops to the desert, through South Central and into sex clubs and the homes of the fabulously wealthy, facing hippies, the mob, and old friends perhaps more dangerous than anyone else. Set against the social and political upheaval of the late 1960s, Blood Grove is ultimately a story about survival, not only of the body but also the soul.

Buenos Aires, 1981. Inspector Alzada's work in the Buenos Aires police force during the Dirty War exposes him to the many realities of life under a repressive military regime: desperate people, angry people and - most of all - missing people. Personally, he prefers to stay out of politics, favouring a steady job and domesticity with his wife Paula over the path taken by his hot-headed revolutionary brother, Jorge. But when Jorge is disappeared, Alzada knows he will stop at nothing to recover him.  Buenos Aires, 2001. Argentina is in the midst of yet another devastating economic crisis. Alzada is still an inspector: he's burnt out, frustrated that he hasn't been able to affect real change, and convinced of the futility of yet another doomed Argentinean attempt at democracy. This time he is determined to remain a detached bystander, to keep his head down in anticipation of a peaceful retirement with Paula and the nephew they've raised together. However, all his plans are derailed as the riots gain traction and a young woman's dead body lands in the dumpster behind the morgue on the same day a woman from one of the city's wealthiest families goes missing. Repentance is by Eloisa Diaz.

Quiet in her Bones is by Nalini Singh. My mother vanished ten years ago. So did a quarter of a million dollars in cash. Now, she's back. Her bones clothed in scarlet silk. When socialite Nina Rai disappeared without a trace, everyone wrote it off as another trophy wife tired of her wealthy husband. But now her bones have turned up in the shadowed green of the forest that surrounds her elite neighborhood, a haven of privilege and secrets that's housed the same influential families for decades. The rich live here, along with those whose job it is to make their lives easier. And somebody knows what happened to Nina one rainy night ten years ago. Her son Aarav heard a chilling scream that night, and he's determined to uncover the ugly truth that lives beneath the moneyed elegance . . . but no one is ready for the murderous secrets about to crawl out of the dark. Even the dead aren't allowed to break the rules in this cul-de-sac.

Proof of Life is by R J Ellory. Stroud's best years are behind him. A former war photographer, he's seen things no one should have to see. He left the front line before his luck ran out. His best friend and mentor, Vincent Raphael, was not so fortunate and died in an explosion. His body was never recovered; his friends buried an empty box. But then Stroud gets a call from his old editor, Marcus Haig. Two months ago Raphael was photographed in Istanbul. Stroud doesn't believe it's him, but there's money on the table for Stroud to go out there and prove he's dead. But the more he looks, the harder that becomes. Stroud's journey will take him from London, to Istanbul, to Amsterdam, Paris and Berlin - on the trail of a shadow. A man who not only should be dead - but may never have existed.

The only thing the three women had in common was their husband. And, as of this morning, that they're each accused of his murder. Blake Nelson moved into a hidden stretch of land - a raw paradise in the wilds of Utah - where he lived with his three wives: Rachel, the chief wife, obedient and doting to a fault. Tina, the other wife, who's everything Rachel isn't. And Emily, the youngest wife, who knows almost nothing else. When their husband is found dead under the desert sun, the questions pile up. What are these women to each other now that their husband is dead? Will the police uncover the secrets each woman has spent her life hiding? And is one of them capable of murder...? Black Widows is by Cate Quinn.

March 2021

In East Long Beach, California, the LAPD is barely keeping up with the neighborhood's high crime rate. Murders go unsolved, lost children unrecovered. But someone from the neighborhood has taken it upon himself to help solve the cases the police can't or won't touch. A high school dropout, Isaiah Quintabe's unassuming nature disguises a ferocious intelligence. Most people call him IQ. Word has gotten around: if you've got a problem, Isaiah will solve it, his rates adjustable to your income or lack thereof. Smoke is by Joe Ide.

April 2021

The Hit List is by Holly Seddon. Congratulations, someone wants you dead. When Marianne's husband Greg is knocked off his bike and killed on the way to work, she must unpick the life he left behind. Numb with grief, Marianne consoles herself by scouring Greg's laptop, finding comfort in reading his old emails and tracing his footsteps across the web. Until one day, she discovers that he had been accessing the dark web. Why was Greg, a principled charity worker and dedicated husband, logging on to a website that showcases the worst of humanity's cruel impulses and where anything is available for a price? Marianne steels herself and logs on. After tentative searching, she discovers her name on a hit list. In this fast-paced, powerful and exceptionally plotted novel, Marianne must figure out whether Greg was trying to protect her or whether he was complicit in the conspiracy for her murder. As she is pulled deeper into the depths of the underworld that Greg was seemingly hostage to, she gets closer and closer to coming face to face with Sam - the assassin hired to kill her. The dark truths that Marianne uncovers speak volumes about the dark underbelly of our society and forces us to question how far we would go to protect those we care most about.

Four women.. Orly, Lenny, Mel and Thea have been best friends since school. But now it is 20 years later and inevitably they have drifted apart. One weekend.. It is Lenny's 40th birthday, plus Orly and Mel need cheered up, so Thea suggests a weekend away at a festival in their hometown. It's a chance for them all to reconnect. Not all of them will survive. But their holiday soon takes a sinister turn, and not all of the friends will leave the festival alive... The Festival is by Sarah J Naughton.

Look What You Made Me Do is by Nikki Smith. Sisters Jo and Caroline have it all. Perfect houses. Perfect husbands. Perfect lives. But when their father passes away, the contents of his Will forces them to question what they have always believed to be the truth about their family, their marriages, and themselves. As the stakes grow ever higher, it is clear they are hiding secrets too. Secrets which they'll do anything to protect. And theirs could turn out to be lethal...

May 2021

The Pact is by Sharon Bolton. A golden summer, and six talented friends are looking forward to the brightest of futures. But after a dare-devil game goes horribly wrong, a woman and two children are killed. Eighteen-year-old Megan takes the blame, leaving the others free to get on with their lives. In return, they each agree to a ‘favour’, payable on her release from prison. Twenty years later, it’s payback time. 

Faith Diamond grew up on the wrong side of the tracks. With a family incapable of staying on the right side of the law, her future has always been about survival. Then a series of prostitutes are found murdered, their only connection the pimp, Marshall Vella – a man connected in more ways than one with the Diamond family. And Faith is forced to consider the possibility that the peo- ple she loves might be entrenched in something more evil than even she could ever have imagined . . Loaded is by Niki Mackay.

June 2021

Marion Lane and the Midnight Murder is the debut novel by T A Wilberg. They were a band of mysterious private detectives who lived beneath the streets of London in a labyrinth of twisted tunnels and ancient hallways, the entrance to which no one had ever found. The Inquirers were something of a myth, a whispered legend that may or may not exist, depending on whom you asked. They were like ghosts, some said, these sleuths who guarded the city... London, 1958: Elaborately disguised and hidden deep beneath the city's streets lies the world of Miss Brickett's, a secret detective agency, training and housing the mysterious Inquirers. From traversing deceptive escape rooms full of baited traps and hidden dangers, to engineering almost magical mechanical gadgets, apprentice detectives at Miss Brickett's undergo rigorous training to equip them with the skills and knowledge they will need to solve the mysteries that confound London's police force. But nothing can prepare 23-year-old apprentice Marion Lane for what happens after the arrest of her friend and mentor Frank on suspicion of murder: he has tasks Marion with clearing his name and saving his life. Her investigation will place Marion and her friends in great peril as they venture beyond The Border and into the forbidden maze of uncharted tunnels that surround Miss Brickett's. Being discovered out of bounds means immediate dismissal, but that is the least of Marion's problems when she discovered that the tunnels contain more than just secrets.

Truth or Dare is by M J Arlidge. A crimewave sweeps through society and no one is safe. The rising tide of crime threatens to drown the city and, along with it, D.I. Helen Grace. A vicious arson at the docks. A violent carjacking near the hospital. A fatal attack in a country park. Crimes without motive, without suspects and without any leads. Each crime is a piece of a puzzle – with many more pieces still to come. And as they all fall into place, Helen Grace will face the case that may be the end of her . 

July 2021

The Wrong Mother is by Michel Bussi. Nothing is as fragile as the memory of a child...
Malone, a child barely four years old, starts to claim that his mother isn't his real mother. It seems impossible. His mother has birth certificates, photos of him as a child and even the pediatrician confirms this is her child. The school psychologist is the only one who believes him and he's in a race against time to find out the truth. He approaches Marianne Augresse, a police captain with better things to do with her time. Hot on the heels of a major criminal, she has little interest in the stories of a child. But what if she's wrong?

Lost is the beginning of a new crime series by Simon Beckett and introduces readers to Jonah Colley, an armed response officer with the Met Police. Ten years ago, the abduction of Colley’s young son ended his career as a police detective and almost destroyed him. A plea for help from an estranged friend leads Jonah to a brutal attack of which he’s the only survivor. Discharged from the force and under suspicion himself, his search for the truth throws doubt on everything he thought he knew. 

The Dying Squad is by Adam Simcox. Detective Inspector Joe Lazarus always believed he could solve any murder, until it came to his own. When Lazarus storms a Lincolnshire farmhouse, he expects to bring down the drug gang within it; instead, he discovers his own bleeding-out body and a spirit guide called Daisy-May. She's there to enlist him to The Dying Squad, a spectral police force who solve crimes their flesh and blood colleagues cannot. Lazarus reluctantly accepts and returns to the Lincolnshire Badlands, where he faces dangers from both the living and the dead in his quest to discover the identity of his killer - before they kill again.

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